SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — A former Fort Stewart soldier faces nearly a decade in prison for sexual contact with a child.

The Southern District of Georgia said the abuse happened at the base in 2006.

Clarence Lynch, 43, of Highland, Ill. was charged with abusive sexual contact of a child under 12 and faces 109 months in prison, David H. Estes, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. He was also fined $2,000 and must serve 15 years of supervised release.

“Justice for this victim was long delayed, but ultimately not denied as the predator is now being held accountable for his vile actions,” Estes said.

Lynch was convicted in Liberty County in 2007 of sexual battery and false imprisonment with a 15-year-old. He served 10 years in prison for that charge and was dishonorably discharged from the Army.

Three years after Lynch served his time, a prior victim told Illinois police that Lynch had abused the then 10-year-old several times while he was stationed at Fort Stewart. Investigators arrested Lynch in March 2021, Estes said.

“Seeing this former Soldier held accountable for his actions perpetrated against a child, no matter how long it took to bring the Soldier to justice, is a hallmark of what Army CID stands for,” said Supervisory Special Agent Donald Hayden, Fort Leonard Wood CID Office. “Our agents are professional, tenacious and driven to do what is right at all times.”

Estes urges anyone with information on child sexual exploitation to call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 800-843-5678 or submit a tip online.